Infra-Red Connector

I really, really want to use the infra-red connector on my motherboard.  Does anybody have a full circuit for the module which connects to the two rows of pins marked iRDA on my motherboard - soyo 5bt?  I have looked everywhere, including in New York whilst on holiday.  I have some knowledge of circuit building but not much.  Thank's for your help
RavAsked:
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publicConnect With a Mentor Commented:
HP makes irda modules. Try HP web site at www.hp.com, or call applications for data sheets. They will give you samples, and evaluations boards free. HP has local offices in the UK.
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RavAuthor Commented:
Edited text of question
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semontgomeryCommented:
Rav,

If your not very famiiar with building the circuitry for an iRDA connector, I would reccommend just buying the kit.  One possible module is http://www.actisys.com/ACT210.html.  It costs about $60.

You may also need to enable the iRDA port in your BIOS.

Scott
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RavAuthor Commented:
Hmmm, not sure whether I really want it for $60.  Another problem is that i live in the UK so ordering it might be a problem too.  With regard to building it, I would like to give it a try as I'm at university studing electronics, except I don't have much confidence.  Of course, I would easily find somebody who could solder it well though.  Thanks for the advice though.  Much appreciated.
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graberCommented:
Rav, do you have a pinout for he connector in question?  Are you looking for something that will give you breadboard isolation from the computer or are you looking for an understanding of iDRA.  The iDRA I can't help you with.  I can help with circuit isolation.  Can I help?
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RavAuthor Commented:
Grabber, I have a pinout for the connector:
http://www.fbe.fh-frankfurt.de/mitarb/schellha/ic/hwb/co_MbIrDA.html
What I would like to build is a 4mbit circuit which hooks up to this so that I can transfer data to a suitably equipped laptop with an irda port.  I wish to use the standard irda functions such as those used in software such as laplink and built-in to win 98.  So I guess I do need circuit isolation.  Thanks.
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graberCommented:
Rav then look into optoisolators.  They come in a variety of packages.  Digikey is a real good place to start. I will look up some chip numbers for you to night and let you know tomarrow.  Digikey has a web page.  You can use that till then.  The opto isolation uses IR to switch a transistor base and they can have extremely high voltage isolations.  I have used them to isolate microcontrollers.
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RavAuthor Commented:
Wouldn't an optoisolator on its own be insufficient?  Surely I need some sort of transceiver module?  From what I remember, optoisolators don't actually send out ir signals to the outside world, merely within their casing.
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graberCommented:
If you double up on the optoisolator ,one for each direction,  then you can use that to pass information back and forth on and off the mother board.  If you wish to capture data to you will need a register also.  But to start I might use one of the address legs to hardwire a chip select to write off or read onto the motherboard.  When you select that address it will attivate the reading to and writing from.  This will get information off and on the main board. Setting up communication between boards will take a bit more doing.  Start with what I recommended and play for awhile.  This will give you a chance to grow into what you MIGHT need.  
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RavAuthor Commented:
I think we're moving a little off the intended question.  I would like to use the irda header for its intended use which is wireless transfer between computers.  Hence I essntially need an ir transmitter and receiver and the appropriate interface for them.
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graberCommented:
Looks like your back to puchasing the kit then.  Unless you have a circuit diagram for the transciever I guess this is far as I can take you rav.  Good Luck
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RavAuthor Commented:
Okay, thanks for your help.  It may well come in useful one day.
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RavAuthor Commented:
So, if I ask them for an evaluation board, they will send me one for free?  Cool.  I'm gonna try that and let you know what happens.  Any ideas on part numbers to ask for?
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